Due Diligence: Finding Employees to Staff Your Franchise

No franchisee can run a business entirely on his/her own. No matter how small it might be, you will need at least 2-3 people help perform the day to day operations of the business, even if it’s a home-based business. The larger it is, the more people you will need to run it efficiently.

For a micro-business (2-3 people), you can certainly start with family members or close friends that you trust. Beyond that and possibly as the business grows, you will certainly need to advertise and recruit for employees. Just as you need a marketing plan to advertise your business to attract new customers, you need a very similar plan to recruit people to work for you.

Advertising the Position

Your first points to consider include:

  • How much have you budgeted for employment advertising?
  • What position(s) you need to fill IMMEDIATELY to open the business? (I.E. Manager v. kitchen staff, part-time v. full-time, temp v. permanent, contractor v. employee, etc.)
  • How many will be hourly v. salaried?

One you have those pieces figured out, consider WHERE you should advertise your employment opportunities. This can vary widely based on your type of business and the types of position you need to fill. For example: A person seeking employment as a Cook in a fast food restaurant would probably not be looking for a job in the same place as someone looking for a General Manager position at the same restaurant.

Where to Recruit for Employees

Beyond word of mouth, there are basically three (3) main venues to advertise for employees:

  • Online
  • Printed Media
  • Onsite

A closer look at each of these can help you decide which is best for the positions you need to fill. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not necessarily and entirely free to use any of these methods!


Nearly all of the most popular and reputable sites where people search for employment are free for the Job Seeker to use. However, it’s not free for an employer to post the job. Fees vary widely by website, industry, and city/state. Following are a few examples.

  • Monster.com: From $130 - $375+ to post in one city
  • Careerbuilder.com: From $176 - $419+
  • Craigslist.com: Cost depends on what city and number of categories you want the job to be listed in.
  • Snag-a-Job.com (Primarily for Hourly positions): From $69 - $129+
  • Simply Hired.com: From $99 - $199+
  • Indeed.com: Pricing is based on “Pay-Per-Click”. You decide how much you will pay for each time a person clicks on your job ad.
  • LinkedIn.com: Cost depends on the city where you want to post.

Of course it is mostly free to post job opportunities on your franchise website – if the franchisor has set one up for you before you open!

You can also set up a Facebook page for your franchise and post a “Now Hiring” message there. But it does cost extra to actually post any kind of ad on Facebook. Otherwise, Facebook wouldn’t be free to any user.

Printed Media

This includes newspapers, trade journals/magazines, and even those free pamphlets of employment opportunities you see in racks at the grocery store’s entry/exit doors. Job postings in printed media generally fall into the category of ‘classified ads’. Rates are usually much higher than online venues. Final/actual cost depends on the publication, city, size of the ad, number of words in the ad, color/graphic elements, and how often you want the ad to run.

A printed ad is probably the most expensive option for employment recruiting and the least likely to be seen by a potential candidate, most of whom use the internet to search for employment.


A simple ”We’re Hiring!” flyer posted on the window/door of your business, or as a handout on the reception/cashier counter is one of the most under-utilized, most effective, least expensive job advertising strategies available. Sure, it’s certainly low-tech. But the potential benefit is immediate. Customers can take one and give it to a friend, employees can take copies and distribute to friends, and you can attract neighbors in the area surrounding your business.

While this may sound entirely free, remember – even if you print the copies yourself, you’re using ink for the printer and ink isn’t free.

What To Say in the Job Ad

This is probably the easiest part of your recruiting project. Your franchisor can certainly give you samples of the ads they have used to recruit job candidates for the headquarters/flagship location. Using their samples will ensure that you have a template/guideline that is consistent with their standards for language and branding. There should be no need to “reinvent the wheel” of employee recruiting for your franchise.

Recruiting employees for your franchise is just one of the many tasks that a new franchisee must tackle, and usually long before the doors are opened. Figuring out your strategy is a first step to getting the employees you need to operate your business.

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